We demand to stop the persecutions against the participants of rallies

The human rights protection organization continue to receive calls regarding the persecutions of the participants in the peaceful assembly on April 25 of 2018. In particular, the latter are called to investigative bodies in the status of witness, suspect, accused in order to conduct investigative activities, which restrict and hinder the citizens right to peaceful assembly. It should be mentioned, that on April 18 of 2018, the RA Special Investigative Service accepted the proceeding of the criminal case in accordance with Article 225 of the RA Criminal Code (mass disorder) and Article 225.1 of the RA Criminal Code (organizing of assemblies with the violation of the law). In the scope of the mentioned case, on April 22 of 2018 activists of the peaceful assembly Armen Gevorgyan and David Sanasary were detained. On April 23 of 2018, Levon Barseghyan was arrested and the Members of the National Assembly Nikol Pashinyan, Ararat Mirzoyan and Sasun Mikayelyan were “kidnapped” from the place of the assemblies.

Within the periodo of April 17-23 of 2018, more than 1000 particiapnts of the peaceful assemblied were brought to different police stations, where they were kept for until 11 hours without any legal ground and explaination.

A number of the released people informed about the violence and the ill treatment by the police towards them. The majority of the detainees were questioned as accussed or witness. As we have already mentioned, the detainees were adressed 28 standardized and guided questions.

According to the official data published by the RA Invetigative Committee and the RA Special Invetigation Service, more than 67 people were aressted and the later were kept for more than 48 hours.

Thus, though the initiators and the supported of the “Do a Step” movement are now released, the criminal persecution against them continue.

We demand to immidiately stop the ungounded criminal persecutions against them, discontinue the criminal case and stop the illegal persecutions against the latter through the investigative activities.

At the same time, despite the facts, reports and video recordings, the police activities regarding the criminal cases instituted against the participants of the peaceful assemblies, as well as the sanctioning procedures against the later are not until now known.

We demand to immidiately institute an examination on the illegal activities by the Police, separate provocators, policemen in civilian clothes against the participanst of the peaceful assemblies during the period of April 13-23 of 2018, as well as on the facts regarding the instituting of criminal case by the pleminary investigation bodies.

At the same time, it is necessary to mention that, seperate calls from the regions of Armenia  regaring the pressures against the workers, particularly employees of schools and kindergardens, who had a wish to participate in the peaceful assemblies were received. The later are not allowed to participate in the assemblies.

The RA internal police troops are centrilizing equipments in the central parts of Yerevan City as of April 25 of 2018, 12:30 AM.

We find the mentioned activities of the authorities and law enforcement bodies are disproportionate and unlawful and can cause unnecessary tension.

It should be mentioned, that the demonstration of thousands of citizens towards Tsitsernakaberd  on April 24 went completely without violation, which facts about the exclusive lawfulness of Armenian citizens as peaceful demonstrators.

We urge the current RA authorities and law enforcement bodies to refrain from disproportionate actions, refuse the attempts of using psychological and pyhsical pressures against the peaceful demonstrators.

The statement was elaborated

by the Protection of Rights without Borders NGO and the

Helsinki Citizens Assembly Vanadzor NGO.


The joined organizations

Transparency International Anti-Corruption Center

Helsinki Association Human Rights Protection NGO

Open Society Foundations-Armenia

The Rule of Law NGO

Public Journalism Club

Colorful House Social-Cultural and Human Rights

EcoNew Informative NGO

Real World, Real People NGO

Women’s Empowerment Center NGO

Potential of Awakening NGO

Armenian Innocence Project

For Equal Rights NGO

Human Rights House Yerevan Human Rights Protection NGO

The Committee to Protect Freedom of Expression

«Sose» Women Issues NGO

Against Legal Arbitrariness NGO

Women Resources Center

Journalists for Future NGO

Union of Informed Citizens

Khazer ecocultural NGO

Public Information and Need of Knowledge

CPI Armenian Center

Hrazdan Civic-Youth Center

Association of Women with University Education – Ejmiatsin branch

«Free Citizen» NGO

Journalists for Human Rights NGO

Goris Press Club

Shogher Union Social-Cultural NGO